On the whole, the first round of qualifying threw up few surprises as form was mostly maintained, although 5 of the 22 seeds were upset on Tuesday – Alizé Cornet, Kaia Kanepi, Katerina Siniakova, Heather Watson and Leylah Fernandez.
Cornet, the No 4 from France, was the biggest casualty of the day, succumbing a tight encounter to Xiyu Wang, a 20-year old from China, 6-1 4-6 7-6(6), while Estonia’s 7th seed, lost in straight sets to Kateryna Kozlova from the Ukraine, 6-1 6-4.
Siniakova, the No 8 seed from the Czech Republic, went down to the in-form Ana Bogdan from Romania, 7-6(7) 7-5, as Watson’s disappointing season continued, with the 10th-seeded Brit losing 6-3 6-3 to Switzerland’s Stefanie Voegele.
Fernandez, the 18-year old Canadian who was seeded 12th, fought hard but fell short against Croatian wild card Ana Konjuh, 7-6(6) 2-6 6-4.
Top seeds Anastasija Sevastova and Kristina Mladenovic both progressed, but needed three sets to overcome their first-round opponents.
Sevastova, the No 1 seed from Latvia, had her hands full with Bulgaria’s Tsvetana Pironkova but prevailed, 3-6 6-4 6-3, while Mladenovic, the 2nd seed from France, had to go to a final set tiebreak to get past Spanish wild card Mintegi Del Olmo, who is ranked 716 in the world, 6-3 5-7 7-6(1).
Other winners on Tuesday included Laura Siegemund, the German 3rd seed, Montenegro’s 5th seed Danka Kovinic and Taipei’s Su-Wei Hsieh, the 6th seed.
In other news, Dayana Yastremska’s pending appeal has been denied, leaving the 20-year old Ukrainian, who has been ranked as high as No 21 in the world, sidelined from the tour as she remains ineligible to compete.
Yastremska was suspended on 7 January for failing an out-of-competition drug test, having tested positive on 22 December for mesterolone metabolite, a prohibited substance that can be used to boost testosterone.
The Ukrainian has denied using performance enhancers or prohibited substances, but her second appeal was again denied on Tuesday.
Her first appeal was rejected after she had travelled to Australia for the Australian Open on the off-chance that she would be allowed to play, but she ultimately made the long journey for nothing and was among the 72 players forced into a two-week period of strict quarantine prior to the tournament.
Yastremska has won 3 WTA singles titles, while her best showing at a Grand Slam was reaching the 4th round at Wimbledon in her main-draw debut there in 2019.